Nazar was born in Lviv, Ukraine. He started dancing at age five and was the Juvenile Western Ukrainian Champion in Ballroom and Latin, and a youth and amateur finalist in competitions throughout Europe. After finishing a degree in Veterinary Medicine, he moved to New York City to teach and dance professionally. Nazar performed during Vegas Week of So You Think You Can Dance, and was featured on ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars” Christmas Spectacular.
Mariko is from Cambridge, Massachusetts. She also started dancing at age five, studying classical ballet for thirteen years, and training at some of the top schools in the region. She attended Harvard University, where she earned a degree in Intellectual History and was introduced to ballroom dance. In 2006 she graduated and turned professional.
In 2009 Nazar was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, which strengthened his determination to compete at a world class level, and motivated him to show young people with Type 1 Diabetes that they can still pursue their dreams.
Nazar and Mariko began dancing together in 2012. Their partnership was established over a cup of coffee, before even dancing together. They agreed that as long as they shared the same goals, values, and coaches that they could learn how to dance together! By the time they met, both Nazar and Mariko had become addicted to the complexity, subtlety, and power of International Style Ballroom. During their partnership they also discovered a talent and love for the acrobatics and storytelling of Ballroom Show dance, and the opportunity it offers to dance outside the box.
- Two Time, Undefeated US National Ballroom Showdance Champions
- World Ballroom Showdance Silver Medalists- Two Time World Ballroom Showdance Finalists
- Canadian Open Professional Champions
- US Open to the World Professional Finalists
- US National Professional Rising Star Finalists
- World Masters Showdance Champions
- Eastern United States Dancesport Professional Ballroom and Showdance Champions
Mariko and Nazar believe in authenticity, determination, and lifelong learning, and that every challenge is a chance to develop.
They look forward to always growing as dancers and as people, and to sharing their love of dance through performances, competitions and teaching.
Feel free to contact them for all your dance related needs!
Nazar Batih and Mariko Cantley
Professional Ballroom Dancers
Members of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing
Coaching, Performances, Workshops